A recent upsurge of race and religious issues over beer, shorts, launderette and Christianisation to compensate for the disastrous flops over Najib’s meeting with Trump and RCI on forex losses to target Mahathir and Anwar
There has been an upsurge of race and religious issues over beer, shorts, launderette and so-called Christianisation to compensate for the propaganda setbacks suffered by UMNO/BN over the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s meeting with US President Trump and the failure of the Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) to target former Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad and former Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.
The Cabinet should take heed of the call by the Human Rights Commission (Suhakam) Chairman Tan Sri Razali Ismail - whose distinguished diplomatic service included a year as President of the United Nations General Assembly - that Putrajaya should “take stock of the drift towards religious extremism”.
The prospect of creeping Talibanisation is the concern of all moderate and patriotic Malaysians, regardless of race, religion, culture or region, who love Malaysia and want the country to be an oasis of peace and harmony in a very troubled world and be an example to the world of how a plural society formed out of diverse races, religions, languages and cultures could unite to build a harmonious, tolerant, moderate and modern nation which is just, democratic, progressive and prosperous.
Even the Association of Churches in Sarawak Chairman Rev Justin Wan had yesterday sounded the call for Malaysians to wake up and stop the religious extremism which reared its ugly head in recent times.
As a representative of G25, the influential NGO of the country’s former top public servants, Johan Ariffin, former deputy director of Sabah Foundation, warned a few days ago, the authorities must be vigilant against any “over-reach” of Islamic laws and fatwas which affect the non-Muslims, which will not only undermine Malaysia’s image as a moderate Muslim nation but violate the bedrock principle of the Federal Constitution and a cornerstone of the formation of Malaysia with Sabah and Sarawak in 1963.
Najib’s Global Movement for Moderates (GMM) should be in the forefront to counter the recent upsurge of extremism, bigotry and intolerance in the country but it was strangely andn conspicuously silent and inert – reinforcing the critique that the GMM initiative has proved to be a disastrous failure as being neither global, a movement nor moderate!
The country is thankful to the Johore Sultan Ibrahim Sultan Iskandar for ending the controversy by ordering the Muslim-only launderette in Muar to stop its controversial policy or it should shut down.
The Johor Sultan rightly said that Johor and Malaysia are not an Islamic State – that Johor and Bangsa Johor belong to all races and faiths, upholding a progressive, modern and moderate state.
Yesterday, the Prime Minister said that the action of the launderette in Muar in apologizing and withdrawing the decision to offer the laundry service only to Muslims should be well-received as there was a basis in the concern of the Sultan of Johor that the entrepreneur’s action would lead to a narrow image of Islam, contrary to the country’s desire to nurture a united, harmonious, moderate and tolerant society.
As exponent of the Wasatiyyah (moderation) principles in Islam, Najib should be in the forefront against all forms of extremism, intolerance and bigotry in the country, and not come in at the tail-end after the Sultan of Johore had spoken out against such extremism, intolerance and bigotry.
Will the Cabinet next week place on top of its agenda the recent upsurge of race and religious issues which undermined Malaysia’s image of moderate and tolerant nation?